First time TS, how long is the wait?

Hello, I am a naturalized citizen and I went through the entire process over the last two years. My SF86 was submitted in September of 2019, I had my background investigation interview soon afterwards. Finally, I had my CI screening and poly in July of 2021. My sponsor told me I passed the poly and that’s it for now. TS with poly is for a linguist/language analyst position with the language in high demand. Am I asking the “when” question too soon? How long does NSA adjudication take at this point for such positions? I also applied for the position directly through the agency. Would this speed up the process? Thank you.

Wow, you had almost 2 years passed between SF86 and CI/Poly.
I am in exactly the same situation: naturalized citizen, applied directly to the same agency, for the same position. The difference is, I sent my SF86 in March of this year and had CI/psych/poly in May. Still waiting.

The difference may be that I am pre-pandemic and you are post-pandemic? Anyway, glad that it was shorter for you. They also say that each case is absolutely unique… (background, experience, education, foreign contacts, etc…)

Absolutely. I also had a BI completed with a different agency a year before I submitted my SF86 to these guys, so they might be using it, or parts of it.
The bad thing is, given we are dealing with HR and not FSO - they are telling me that they don’t know anything regarding the process. Can’t even tell me if I’m still in the BI phase or in adjudication. I suspect they could find out if they really wanted to but why bother…


There are no statistics available for average processing times at NSA–only anecdotal information is available and individual cases can vary dramatically.


Warning: Anecdotal Information

For what it’s worth, I had my polygraph/psych eval in April 2021 and got favorable adjudication notice in July 2021.

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2.5-3 months sounds awesome. Lucky :slight_smile: !

Not necessarily, considering I applied for the job in June 2019 and filled out my SF-86 in January 2020.

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I echo William’s comment. Only rough averages can be determined as each case brings unique depths of investigation and sourcing. I can say the handful of naturalized citizens took far longer than average 18 month to 24 month cases. One took 4 years and they requested the guy’s wife also poly due to deep ties, foreign property ownership and helping during harvest time annually. The other comment as well holds much truth concerning pandemic impacts on office hours.

Thanks for the input. Of course it takes longer to clear naturalized citizens. My spouse is an American born American who used to hold a TS clearance so at least this part is easy.